Home / Past Competitions / 2017 / Batteries


School:University of Kansas
Team:Ben Wellwood, Paige Drummond, Sam Ritchie

Many simple electronics depend on battery power, yet the purchase of batteries has always been seen to consumers as a “necessary evil” that often leaves the environmentally-conscious buyer feeling guilty. Batteries are short-lived and harmful to the environment if disposed of improperly, and the user experience of owning batteries is overlooked in the standard packaging. Batteries are commonly packaged in molded plastic attached to chipboard backing, which makes for difficult opening even with the aid of a perforated window. The packaging is disposed of, and the batteries are commonly thrown into a drawer with other objects. Most consumers are unsure of how and where to properly dispose of used batteries. Often, new batteries are thrown into household junk drawers where they mix with old batteries.

Our brand identity, Batteries Included, works to eliminate the buyer guilt associated with purchasing batteries. We provide consumers with packaging designed to store batteries in an intuitive way that separates used batteries from new batteries. Our packaging also provides a convenient way to safely dispose of used batteries. Batteries Included uses 90% recycled paper stickers and cardboard. The design is for both in-store display, in-home storage, and in-mail shipping.

The package is designed to allow for hanging in point-of-purchase displays or shelf display. Its visual identity allows consumers to easily identify what type of battery they are purchasing, expressed in large lettering and identifiable coloring. The package has a key-locked top and bottom to support the weight of multiple batteries.

After purchase, the user interaction is focused around consumer ease-of-access, separation of new and used batteries, and storage. The hanging tab is designed to fold back at perforations and lock into the back. This allows the battery packaging to sit at an angle conducive to dispensing batteries and allow for easy storage in drawers. The consumer unclasps the bottom keylock, which opens downward to catch and hold dispensed batteries. The user removes the desired amount of batteries and reclasps the keylock. When batteries have been used up, the user can open the top keylock of the package and insert the battery, which will roll down into the open space. The sliding dividers inside of the package will separate the old batteries from the new ones. Each package has two dividers: the first divider appears when the consumer will run out of batteries soon and provides a reordering coupon, and the second divider tells the consumer they are out of batteries. This second divider also serves to separate the new batteries from the old batteries, which roll behind the divider as they are put into the top keylock opening.

When the package is out of new batteries and completely full of old batteries, the packaging provides a sticker label on the back for shipping to a local battery disposal center. The side of the package provides instructions that direct the user to find their disposal location at The user can self-address the label and ship it to their disposal location.